Two kayak instructors scout a rapid on the ACA Instructor Course.
A kayak instructor on an ACA instructor course holds a student's head while teaching him to roll a kayak.
A student on the ACA kayak instructor course presents a lesson plan while kneeling next to the river.

ACA Kayak Instructor Course


2023 Dates: 5 Days in April April 2023
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    Ages: 18+

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    Difficulty: Class III Kayaking Skills Required

The ACA Kayak Instructor Course is for whitewater kayakers interested in working as professional kayak instructors or simply developing proficiency in kayak teaching techniques. This instructor training course leads to certification as a whitewater kayak instructor by the American Canoe Association, or the ACA. The ACA has created the nation’s premier teaching certification program for kayaking. With more than 40 years of experience, the ACA has developed a specific and proven set of paddle sports’ best practices, inspiring participants to share their expertise and knowledge of kayaking in the safest, most effective way.

This course will combine on-water demonstrations and presentations in a variety of environments with discussion sessions on teaching methodology, skill development, and peer feedback. You’ll learn how to reach the most challenging students and maintain a fun and safe environment at all times. Don’t be surprised if you walk away from this 40-hour training having refined your technique and learned new ways to build upon your whitewater kayaking skills.

The course will consist of an Instructor Development Workshop (IDW) and Instructor Certification Exam (ICE). Participants will also be required to:

  • Perform paddling skills and demonstrate skills clearly and consistently
  • Demonstrate effective teaching skills
  • Demonstrate technical knowledge of kayaking
  • Demonstrate proper safety and rescue ability
  • Demonstrate effective group/course management and positive interpersonal skills

ACA Kayak Instructor Course Requirements:

  1. Must be at least 18 years old to participate
  2. Be (or become) a member of the ACA and the Safety, Education, and Instruction Committee (SEIC)
  3. Full course completion (attendance, homework, exams, etc.)
  4. Maintain sufficient First-Aid and CPR certifications

Please note that attendance alone will not guarantee certification. Participants must demonstrate skills and pass the ICE to be recognized by the ACA. The course will run from 8:30 AM to 6:00 PM all days, with some evening work.

Dive deeper into your kayaking by learning the methods and techniques used by the nation’s best instructors. Call us today or reserve online to secure your spot on the ACA Kayak Instructor Training Course.

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